Features & Interviews

Five minutes with… Toddington Harper, CEO at GRIDSERVE

11 January 2024 #Features & Interviews

Describe the new Electric Freightway project that GRIDSERVE is involved in?

The £100m Electric Freightway project will run until 2030 with a fleet of eHGVs on the roads supported by a new network of charging infrastructure at motorway service areas, truck stops and commercial depot charging stations.

During this time the project also aims to catalyse the uptake of much larger numbers of eHGVs using Electric Freightway charging infrastructure, together with the rollout of additional charging infrastructure for eHGVs in many more locations, without the requirement for ongoing Government subsidies.

In the initial two-year long procurement phase of the project, eHGV charging hubs will be installed at both motorway services areas and truck stops to support long distance travel around major trunk roads in the UK.

The project also includes more than 10 commercial depot charging locations for eHGVs. In total, over 200 chargers capable of delivering 350kW will be installed, including an initial trial of two one-megawatt capacity chargers.

What is GRIDSERVE’s role in the project?

GRIDSERVE is the lead partner among 33 companies that have come together to further the transition to net zero transport. The role as project lead involves managing and delivering the Electric Freightway project and sourcing the vital data needed to inform further progress towards eHGV adoption.

GRIDSERVE will develop, deliver and operate the eHGV charging hubs at the motorway service areas as well as the commercial depot charging offerings. This is a pioneering project for GRIDSERVE that aims to move the needle in the debate about how to deliver net zero transport for heavy goods vehicles.

We look forward to demonstrating and proving that battery powered electric heavy goods vehicles represents the optimum path to choose, delivering significant benefits over other technology routes in respect of ease and scale of deployment, driver experience, and favourable economics.

Who will provide the eHGVs?

Around 140 eHGVs will initially be brought into fleets by UK companies to use the new network, with multi-national and small businesses collaborating side-by-side. Data collection will run for five years to collate valuable insights into the electrification of eHGVs to support the ongoing transition.

The new charging infrastructure will be supplied by 100% net zero energy to ensure fleets are delivering on their net zero ambitions with the switch to battery electric heavy goods vehicles.

The heavy goods sector currently accounts for just under 20% of the UK’s transport CO2 emissions, with a potential saving of 18.6 Mt CO2e – the same as powering two million homes for a year – if the 400,000 HGVs on the UK’s roads today were switched to electric.

How is it being funded?

The project is funded by consortium members as well as the Department for Transport and Innovate UK backed Zero Emission HGV and Infrastructure Demonstrator programme.

It aims to lay the foundations for the biggest and most advanced eHGV charging network in the world, reshaping how goods are transported across the UK ahead of the 2040 zero emission HGV.

Toddington Harper, CEO at GRIDSERVE


Update Newsletter